blog, articles & publications

LEGISLATIVE ALERT - Recall Petitions and Elections

The Legislature recently approved HB 6060 and HB 6063 which make significant changes to the procedure for recall petitions and recall elections.  The bills were signed by the Governor on December 20 and are now in effect as Pubic Acts 417 and 418 of 2012.  Below is our summary of the bills and the provisions as they relate to the recall of local elected officials:  Read More

Cliff Bloom's Upcoming Presentations for the Cottage and Lakefront Living Shows

Cliff Bloom will be making presentations regarding his book Buying and Selling Waterfront Property in Michigan at the upcoming Michigan Cottage and Lakefront Living Shows in Novi, Michigan, for the Novi Suburban Collections Showcase on Saturday, February 23, 2013, at noon and 3:00 p.m., and again for the show in Grand Rapids, Michigan, at DeVos Place Convention Center on Saturday, March 16, 2013, also at noon and 3:00 p.m.  For more information, visit www.cottageandlakefrontliving.com.  Read More

LEGISLATIVE ALERT: Personal Property Taxes

The Legislature passed a package of bills on December 14 to eliminate personal property tax (PPT) and to provide a mechanism for reimbursement to local taxing units for lost PPT revenues.  The bills were signed by Governor Snyder on December 20.  Certain aspects of this legislation are complicated and remain under review.  Thus, check back for further updates.  In the meantime, we hope that you will find this preliminary summary of each of the bills in the legislation (including the Public Act number assigned to each of the bills) helpful.  Please note that as the result of last minute amendments, the bills eliminating the PPT (marked with an asterisk below) provide that they will be repealed or will not take effect if voters do not approve HB 6026 at a State-wide vote in 2014.  (HB 6026 is the bill that amends the Use Tax Act to provide for reimbursement of local taxing units from a portion of the Michigan use tax.).  Read More

BSM Attorney Assists with New Ethics Handbook

Crystal Morgan participated in the development of the Michigan Local Government Ethics handbook recently published by the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys (MAMA). The handbook is a research guide on Michigan law regarding ethics in local government, including conflicts of interest, incompatible offices, nepotism, and political activity of municipal employees, among other topics. Crystal was a member of the Government Ethics Handbook Committee of MAMA which prepared the handbook with the assistance of Sue Jeffers of the Michigan Municipal League as Editor, six Cooley Law School students as research assistants, and Professor Gerald A. Fisher of Cooley Law School as the students’ supervising editor. The Michigan Municipal League has given the Handbook to all members of MAMA free of charge and the handbook will also be provided to all Michigan law school libraries.

Bloom Sluggett Morgan Partners Recognized as Super Lawyers for 2012

The peer review group Super Lawyers, published by Thomson Reuters, has again named Cliff Bloom and Jeff Sluggett as Super Lawyers, and Crystal Morgan as a Rising Star (the designation for attorneys under 40 years of age or who have practiced law for fewer than 10 years), all in the practice area of Government/Municipal Law.  We thank our clients for making this recognition possible.   Read More

Welcome To Our Open House

After allowing some time for the dust to settle, we finally took the opportunity to throw ourselves a party. Our much anticipated open house took place on Thursday and we received many well wishes from our fantastic clients and friends by way of mentions like this from our friends at Alpine Township, floral arrangements, and of course, guests at our event.  Read More

In Memoriam: Richard L. Root

We note with sadness the passing of former Mayor Richard L. Root of Kentwood. Mayor Root was a true friend and dedicated public servant. He represented Kentwood on a regional and state-wide level and, in doing so, brought great honor to the City. He was good man and will be sorely missed. Our prayers go out to his family.  Read More

Michigan Municipal Law: Our Contribution

Congratulations to Jeff Sluggett and Crystal Morgan on the recent publication of Michigan Municipal Law. The handbook for public sector attorneys is published by The State of Michigan Institute of Continuing Legal Education. It is the first treatise of its kind published in Michigan in a number of years.  Read More

In Memoriam: Walter B. Freihofer

Recently, the Grand Rapids legal community lost a giant with the death of attorney Walter B. Freihofer. Walter passed away at age 89 on May 26, 2012. Our condolences go out to Walter’s wife, Sue, and the Freihofer extended family.  Read More

Congratulations are in Order

We're proud to announce that BSM's Crystal Morgan was invited to become a member of a Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys (MAMA) committee tasked with providing written educational materials to municipal attorneys around the state.  Read More